"Because in Cyberspace, no one can hear you scream."
Monday, May 09, 2005
TEHERAN - Iran's Guardians Council, a hardline body that screens all legislation, has rejected a highly contentious law that allowed abortions in limited cases, the student news agency ISNA reported on Monday.
"It is against sharia (Islamic law) to abort children who would inflict a financial burden on the parents after birth due to mental or physical handicap," ISNA said, quoting parliamentary sources.
Currently it is legal for an Iranian woman to have an abortion up to four months in the pregnancy, if they can prove that the child is mentally or physically handicapped and would be a financial burden to the family. This has led to a "backstreet business" for abortion clinics which are often dangerous although it seems many are willing to take the risk for such an awful procedure.
According to local press reports, at least 80,000 illegal abortions are carried out in Iran each year but some believe the actual figure could be far higher.
The legislation will now be referred back to parliament for amendments and if it is still opposed by the Guardians Council, Iran's top arbitration body the Expediency Council will make a final ruling.
With the religious party in control, Iran may outlaw abortions completely, but with the populace increasingly against everything the government supports, it would probably be wiser to display an ultrasound of the child instead of using religious dogma to those who don't adhere to it.
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